European winter sweets to survive the cold weather!
December 2, 2016
The winter period is always a good time to try the seasonal sweets. In Europe, there are hundreds! If you need a bit of international inspiration, we suggest you some of the best – in our opinion- winter sweets in Europe. Enjoy them!
1) Turrón – the Spain’s Christmas sweet with Arabic origins
Christmas is one of the most important festivities in the Spanish calendar when families gather around a table and enjoy mouth-watering dishes and desserts.
Among the desserts, one of the most famous ones is turrón, a sweet dough made from honey, almonds and eggs, similar to the French nougat. You can find it in plenty of versions (with chocolate, fruits, coconut, pistachio…), however, the most traditional ones are turrón de Alicante (also called hard turrón) and turrón de Jijona (also called soft turrón).
Historians say that this Christmas sweet has its origins in the Arabic Peninsula, where a similar sweet dessert called “turun” was mentioned in old documents as early as in the 11th century.
2) Strollen and lebkuchen
Have you been in any German Christmas market and seen some brownish hearts hanging from stalls? Exactly, with different words written. Then, you already know the lebkuchen, one of the most famous traditional sweets in Germany. Lebkuchen can appear in different shapes and tastes (it can be also spicy!), textures (the ones in fairs are quite hard but commonly they are soft) and use a variety of ingredients.
However, Germans have much more sweets than the lebkuchen. Christmas stollen is another food that you will find on every German table during Christmas (and also in Austria). Thought to have its origins in Dresden, Germans love stollen, which it is made with nuts, dried fruits, raisins, and typical Christmas spices.
3) Panettone and other Italian bread
Typical from Milan, the panettone can be found nowadays in many places in Europe. It consists of a dough to which candied orange, lemon zest and raisins are added. What it is really special is its shape, which looks like a kind of crown. According to the legend, the cake was created in the sixteen century when an Italian baker fell in love with a princess and he created a cake for her.
Panettone comes from the Italian word pane, which means bread. Despite being panettone the most famous Italian Christmas cake (or bread), other Italian regions have their own ones, such as the panforte from Siena or the pandolce from Genova.